War of the Rebellion: Serial 021 Page 0938 W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., LA., TEX., N. MEX. Chapter XXVII.

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there is some mistake about the matter. There are four or five quartermasters on the road and the confusion will be endless. We will expect quartermaster's orders in regard to Government freight and in all cases give preference to such freight, but their assuming control over private shipments is a different matter.

MILTON BROWN,

President Mobile and Ohio Railroad Company.

To this I have received no answer. I therefore deem it my duty to present the facts of the case to you, and request that if not within your proper jurisdiction you present them to General Johnston for relief. This order putting private shipments under the control of quartermasters is plainly without authority of law and opens a door to favoritism and abuse without limit.

Most respectfully, yours,

MILTON BROWN,

President Mobile and Ohio Railroad Company.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE GULF,

Mobile, January 12, 1863.

This subject is respectfully referred for the action of General J. E. Johnston. Though the portion of country from which shipments are made is not within the limits of my district the order of Lieutenant-General Pemberton, in my opinion, seriously affects this portion of my command. The rule I have adopted with reference to railroads is to require that all Government freights should have precedence of all others, if necessary, to the temporary exclusion of other freights; but beyond this I regard an interference of the military authorities with the concerns of individuals and corporations as illegal and impolitic.

I think the order of Lieutenant-General Pemberton is liable to great abuse. Also complaints, whether just or not I have not yet assured myself, are made against quartermasters for favoring their friends, and in one case a speculating house, to the exclusion of individuals who are desirous of shipping for their own use. The rule I have adopted is, I think, the only legal and politic course with reference to railroad companies, and I therefore suggest it for the consideration of the general commanding in the West.

S. B. BUCKNER,

Major-General, Commanding District.

JANUARY 17, 1863.

Respectfully referred to Lieutenant-General Pemberton.

J. E. JOHNSTON,

General.

HDQRS. DEPT. OF MISSISSIPPI AND EAST LOUISIANA,

Jackson, January 18, 1863.

Respectfully returned to General J. E. Johnston. I do not think it advisable to change the spirit of my orders as to transportation.

On affidavit satisfactory to the quartermasters at the particular department that the produce is not for speculation it can be transported, as heretofore authorized.

J. C. PEMBERTON,

Lieutenant-General, Commanding.